The “I Have Something to Say” series is coming at you again! This week we hear from Kristina, in one of the most inspirational pieces I’ve ever read:
“There comes a point in your life where you have to stop searching for success and begin looking for significance”
I heard this quote on the radio about three months ago as I was driving my hour- long commute to work; to an elementary school in VA Beach where I taught 3rd grade. This quote really resonated with me, as this was a particularly difficult year (probably the most) out of my eight years of teaching in public school (I won’t go into details about that though, because that would be a whole separate blog post in itself!). It was as if God was really saying to me, “Stop your perfectionist tendencies/ worries and put all your Faith and Trust in ME; everything else will fall into place.” I had put so much effort these past eight years into being “the best of the best” teacher to my little ones, that I had forgotten what truly matters in this world. I literally had goose bumps as I pondered this throughout the rest of the day after hearing this statement on the radio.
As I was pondering this thought process, I particularly focused on the meaning behind the word, “significance.” According to dictionary.com, the term “significance” means, “the extent to which something matters.” So, the next question I asked myself is, “what really matters?” Does it really matter that I’m stuck in traffic and will be a few minutes late for work? Does this lesson really matter that much that I should lose sleep and physical well being to prepare for it? Does this email that questions the very integrity of my professionalism really matter so much that it should ruin my joy? While some of these things matter to some degree, the answer is most assuredly a resounding “no” when you compare them to what truly matters in this life. All of life’s experiences thus far, and what some would call “coincidences,” truly point to what matters most: that when you love the Lord God with all your heart and put all your Faith and Trust in Him, everything else in this life will fall into place.
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a] have been called according to his purpose.” (NIV)
To support this relevant piece of beautiful scripture: As I mentioned earlier, this past school year was particularly difficult and I was in a very dark place. I finally prayed a long prayer one night giving all the despair and discouragement I felt then about my career to Him. I had lost the joy and questioned the very calling for teaching I always claimed I had since I could remember. I heard that statement on the radio (mentioned at the beginning of the blog post) shortly after giving everything to the Lord. Fast forward and I am now currently teaching at a local private school, just down the road from where I reside in Chesapeake. I wake up excited to go to work everyday. I love everything my new school stands for, the people, the environment; I sometimes have to pinch myself to make sure it is real. I can’t wait for my future children to attend this school. It’s amazing how scripture can reveal itself in the day-to-day struggles of life when you pay attention!
I’m not saying that there will be a happily ever after or that everything will be rainbows and butterflies immediately after praying, because honestly there might not be (at least not the way YOU might expect them to be- been there, done that!). What I do know from experience-supported by scripture- is that if we just let the Lord take the reins of our life, by truly and whole heartedly asking Him to do so through prayer, asking Him to pave the way, He will weave opportunities into your life to build you up closer to Him, and you will find complete JOY!
“And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.” (NIV)
I end this post with this: If you are feeling like you’re giving it all you’ve got and you’re getting nowhere, if you’re feeling discouraged or at the end of your rope, think of that statement on the radio I heard: “stop searching for success and begin looking for significance” Give it all to the Lord genuinely and wholeheartedly, and start seeing the doors of opportunity He will open for you!
“The LORD helps the fallen and lifts those bent beneath their loads.” (NIV)
“The LORD lifts up those who are weighed down. The LORD loves the godly.” (NIV)
Kristina resides in Chesapeake, VA with her husband Adam Stewart of 5 years and fur baby Milton, a Chihuahua/Terrier Mix rescue pup. Kristina is an elementary school teacher, receiving a B.S. degree from Longwood University and a M.Ed. from Regent University. Kristina enjoys running, singing, and traveling the world with her husband. Kristina and her husband enjoy learning about French culture, and look forward to an upcoming trip to France for the Christmas holidays. One life goal that Kristina and Adam have is to be fluent one day in speaking and writing the French language.